Should You Fill The Gap Between Dishwasher and Countertop?

Being an old user of the dishwasher, you must be aware that there is a gap between the dishwasher ad countertop. But if you have purchased a dishwasher for the first time, you might be confused about whether this gap is supposed to be there or not, right? So, the gap between the dishwasher and the countertop is designed for a specific purpose.

For proper ventilation or airflow, the gap between the upper part of the dishwasher is essential. But after using your dishwasher, you can elevate it to remove the gap as per your ease and comfort. For this, you must be aware that how much space between the dishwasher and countertop is essential as there is a huge variety available in the market.

Let’s start a detailed discussion on the gap that is made with the dishwasher.

Gap Between Dishwasher And Countertop

What does the gap between the dishwasher and countertop indicate? 

Have you recently brought a dishwasher for your kitchen? Then you must find out that there should be a gap of around 2 inches between the top of your dishwasher and the base of your countertop. You will get to know this after reviewing the instruction booklet.

You can follow the instructions to attach it, but when will be done, you might see how big and unattractive the open area is. Well, it is essential to have a gap with the dishwasher. It is because the gap serves as a ventilation for the heat that has accumulated around the dishwasher.

Steam leaves the vent openings on the sides or underneath the dishwasher when it loads and empties with heated water. But if there isn’t an air gap around the dishwasher, the heat will either choose a hiding place behind the dishwasher or leak into the nearby closet surfaces.

If this occurs, there is a significant chance that your kitchen could have a fungus problem. Not only that but also it will increase the chances that the dishwasher will corrode in difficult-to-reach areas.

So, by allowing a space between the top of your dishwasher and the base of your countertop, you can avoid these issues. In this way, you must install the dishwasher according to the instructions or get professional assistance.

Why is the gap between the dishwasher and countertop necessary?

Heat is among the key factors in the dishwasher’s washing procedure. There will be a creation of heat in and around the dishwasher within the restricted and semi-enclosed area under your countertop. Heat could generate for water to heat it properly or to efficiently clean all of your lunch plates or warm the air within the dishwasher to dry your plates.

A circulating motor is designed within the dishwasher which gathers water and delivers it to the spraying arms. It could overheat if there is little space than required because ventilation would be constrained. In this way, it could ruin the dishwasher.

Why is the gap required at the front of the dishwasher and not on the edges? In this instance, as heat rises, it can be more useful for heated air to exit the enclosed area within the dishwasher. Additionally, you can more easily change your dishwasher to the perfect height by changing the wheels.

Also Read: Dishwasher Not Cleaning The Top Rack troubleshoot Guide.

How to fill the Gap between the Dishwasher and the countertop?

How to fill the Gap between the Dishwasher and the countertop

If you want to fill the dishwasher gap, you must have enough information about it. The space between the dishwasher and countertop can be filled in one of two very simple methods.

Following are two easy methods that you will have to follow:

1. Elevate the dishwasher

This one is the most simple and quick method to remove the gap between the dishwasher and the countertop. However, some individuals might not be aware that they can elevate the dishwasher. The majority of dishwashers have movable feet. This enables you to push it tightly into a ragged area that has already been carved.

Also, you must check if you can elevate the dishwasher a little bit to close up the gap. The dishwasher door typically extends higher than the remainder of the appliance. In this way, you can get a tiny space between the tabletop and the dishwasher.

2. Tilt the dishwasher up with Shims

This is the second method that helps you to fill up the space between the dishwasher and the countertop. For this, you will have to raise the dishwasher so that there will not be a space between it and the countertop. First of all, you will have to adjust the leg or wheels of the dishwasher.

But what will you do if the dishwasher’s maximum height has already been attained? You will have to determine how much the dishwasher needs to be raised by measuring the gap first. Then you can attach a 2×4 piece of plywood to each side.

You will have to take two pieces of wood that are big enough to raise two legs at once. First, you will place piece one under each of the right-side legs. Afterward, you will place the second piece of wood under the left-side legs.

Use a leveling instrument, once you’ve placed the dishwasher where you would like it to be, to make sure it is square and sturdy. Typically, the front of the dishwasher has a steel plate. It is simple to hide your wood extensions with this piece because it can expand downward.


You can just add your toe kick if it doesn’t work. You must look for a tiny piece of molding or wood. It can be painted to suit your dishwasher or décor. No one will ever notice if you simply attach it to the wooden beams that will be supporting the dishwasher.

What can be issues due to the gap between the dishwasher and the Countertop?

Although the space between the dishwasher and countertop must be maintained, it also serves as a blank canvas for the buildup of dust near your dishwashing machine.

You must be aware that taking out a dishwasher to wash its partially protected chamber can be challenging. Also, it can be difficult when you will have to reattach the electricity and plumbing lines.

If the cabinets in your kitchen are constructed of wood, steam that leaves when your dishwasher is opened or from the ventilation on its door can accumulate there and result in steam burning. Due to this, your wooden furniture will develop a white film, and your cabinets will have to be replaced.

How much gap is required between the dishwasher and the countertop?

If you are going to buy a dishwasher, you might be confused about how many places to leave between kitchen cupboards for a dishwasher. Typically, the majority of appliance manufactures advise a distance of at least 27 inches or more between the dishwasher’s front border and the opposing cupboards.

However, depending on the size of the dishwasher and the size of the kitchenette, these dimensions can change. You must determine the size of the dishwasher to get an estimate of the gap between the dishwasher and the countertop.

See Our Article: Can You Use Drano In A Dishwasher?

Frequently Asked Questions

No, you should not close the gap between the dishwasher and the countertop. It is because when there will not be enough circulation, the dishwasher might have a chance to overheat and damage.

No, you should not. It comes with hooks or a mounting mechanism that secures the appliance to the side panels when fitting an embedded dishwasher. The brackets can have a little gap, but because it is less than an inch wide, more heat is kept inside than is allowed to leave.

Typically, the dishwasher door does not strike the cabinetry flush. The cabinetry and the completely integrated dishwasher are flush. Additionally, there are control panels that are hidden within the door. From the outside, you wouldn’t even recognize it as a dishwasher.

It is extremely common to have a “clearing” or space between the top of your dishwasher and the bottom of your countertop when placing a new dishwasher into a storage cabinet in your kitchen. So, you do not have to worry about the gap between your dishwasher and countertop.

Yes, having room around your dishwasher is essential to installing it and getting its advantages after it is installed in your kitchen. If the dishwasher didn’t have enough space, loading or unloading it would be impossible with the door fully open.


I am sure that now you have a clear understanding of the gap between the dishwasher and the countertop. It is essential to have the space between the countertop and the bottom of the dishwasher to have proper air circulation. Otherwise, your dishwasher can get issues regarding corrosion and overheating. So, you must be cautious while using your dishwasher.

If you have any queries related to this article, you must share your feedback!

Mery kitchen aims

Mery Webber

Mery Webber, the founder of Kitchen Aims, is a passionate home cook with extensive experience in the kitchen appliance industry. Through her blog, she aims to share her knowledge and help readers create the perfect kitchen.

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